Difficult to Know Dukkha and Vedanā

Dhamma Talks by Mogok Sayadaw; no date noted

King Milinda asked Ven. Nāgasena; “Does everyone attain Nibbāna?” Someone can know dukkha and penetrate dukkha will attain it. With these knowledges are the cessation of tanhā. The cessation of tanhā is Nibbāna. Here are 2 important points. These are; ① to know dukkha, ② and to penetrate dukkha.

No.② is not wanting dukkha., so tanhā ceases. No.① is important to know about dukkha. No.② is important for no connection with dukkha. It has to be cut off with knowledge (ñāna). It’s important for a teacher to teach the student to know dukkha. It’s also important for the student not wanting dukkha by cutting off.

To know dukkha again and again and developing by not wanting it. Only by knowing about dukkha that the knowledge of not wanting will arise. If you don’t know and you’re wanting it. Vulture likes the putrid carcass of a dog. Because it’s with the vulture eye and knowing.

You must also change from the knowing of the vulture eye to the knowing of a human eye. Whenever you observe the khandha, it’s only asubha and dukkha. (loathsome and suffering). You must change it from the worldling eye into an ariyan eye. Before wherever we were only making prayers and wishes for dukkha and asubha. And only we are clinging to dukkha and asubha. Vulture eye and its knowing refer to tanhā, upādānā.

(Sayadaw continue to talk about the cause of dukkha by tracing the D.A. process in reverse order, starting from jāra, marana dukkha.) Vedanā, tanhā, upādānā and kamma are the real dukkha. We never complain about it as dukkha. Never complain about good to eat and live as dukkha. (i.e., vedanā).

According to D.A. process, samudaya becomes dukkha and again dukkha becomes samudaya. For example, vedanā → tanhā → upādānā = samudaya → dukkha/samudaya → dukkha, etc.

We never observe tanhā arises and tanhā dies away. Are we really knowing the real dukkha? When dukkha vedanā arises and wanting it to go away of tanhā comes in, and continue to upādānā and kamma. For pleasant feeling (sukha vedanā) and the liking tanhā arises and also continue to upādānā and kamma.

Even dukkha itself exists, do you still know dukkha? Even not knowing about dukkha is far from penetrating dukkha. So, we don’t attain Nibbāna. All you know is the very coarse dukkha (painful feeling). Vedanā is covering up Nibbāna. Pleasant feeling (sukkha vedanā) is the biggest enemy. It’s the most affectionate thing for all of us.

Vedayita sukha and santi sukha are totally different (happiness come from feeling and peace). Vedayita sukha is oppressing and tormenting you. Happiness (sukha) of good feeling oppressing you that never attain peaceful happiness.

(For this point, Sayadaw gave the examples of ants die in honey and fishes die of baits) At last the fish dies with dukkha vedanā by beaten. In your whole life, or saṁsāra vedanā are taking in turn and oppressing you. Don’t say about of understanding dukkha sacca, even we’re falling in love with it. Not knowing dukkha sacca is the worst and the most stupid thing.

cited from https://oba.org.tw/viewtopic.php?f=22&t=4362&p=36299#p36299 (posted on 2019-04-12)

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